Teddy Mac stared out of the window opposite the bookcase. He rubbed his eyes and looked again. “Where has all the grass gone?” he asked Jean Claude. “The grass? Oh, it’s all under water!” replied Jean Claude.“ It has been raining all night and now we have a flood.” Teddy Mac looked towards Beer. “But what about the mole tunnels?” he asked. “Won’t they be flooded too?”  Jean Claude smiled. “Don’t worry, the moles will be able to drain them.” But Teddy Mac couldn’t stop worrying  about Humphrey. “What if he is stuck in a tunnel and can’t get out?” he kept asking. Eventually, Jean Claude said, “Now that the water is beginning to go down,  you boys can make a raft and sail it over to Wildway to see if you can help!”    

    “Oh YES,” shrieked Dai and Owen.  Dai raided the re-cycling bins and found several old milk containers. Owen found a plastic dish that used to have Chinese take-away food in it. And David found some garden string. “We’ll be able to tie everything together with this,” he said, waving it as he slid down the banisters to get to the kitchen.  By lunchtime they had made a raft that would float.

   Mai Won Too used one of  Grandad’s oily cloths to make a sail, tying it to a green wooden spoon.  Jean Claude stood on to the platform to make sure the new raft was safe to sail. David and James held the mooring string while the boys carefully let the raft down onto the water. “You’ll have to be quick!” said James. “You must raise the sail straight away. Use this old ice-lolly stick as a rudder. It will help the raft stay upright.” As soon as the bears were settled, the breeze filled the sail, blowing them across the flooded field in the direction of Wildway. Teddy Mac held on tightly. Dai and Owen clung to either side of  him, holding the rudder between them. It took only a few minutes before they were washed up safely on to the boggy grass at Wildway. “So you got here?” said a familiar voice.  

 “Oh Humphrey! I am so glad to see you,” said Teddy Mac. “We thought the tunnels might be under water.” “They were,” said Humphrey, “but we have cleared most of them  The worst problem is under Deepwater Halt. A fast travelling marble truck got stuck in the mud and its marbles were flung into the spokes of the Water Wheel.” Teddy Mac’s eyes grew wide. “You’ve got a WATER WHEEL?” he asked. “Yes,” said Humphrey, “but it’s broken!” Following Humphrey, they trotted up the hill through the wet grass to where there was a stone bunny at the edge of Deepwater Lake. A huge mole hill opened up beside it. Teddy Mac, Dai and Owen followed Humphrey as he popped down into the tunnel. “Ugh!” said Dai as his furry paws sank into the mud. “Ooh!” said Teddy Mac as the cold water made him shiver. “Yuk!” muttered Owen as his soggy sweater stuck to his fur. They trudged through the half flooded tunnel until they arrived at the enormous Water Wheel underneath Deepwater Halt. Its spokes were jammed with turquoise marbles.  “We can’t reach them, but maybe you can,” said Humphrey. The bears rolled up their sleeves and went to work straight away. 

 Dai and Owen managed to pick out the lower marbles, but Teddy Mac was taller so he could rescue the ones at the top. It wasn’t long before the marbles were piled back in to their truck.  “Let’s try it now,” said Humphrey, “ He pulled a big wooden plank out from underneath the wheel and with a little jerk, water poured into the buckets on the end of each spoke. The wheel started to turn. As the buckets rose upwards they tipped the water back into a little channel which lead to Deepwater Lake. “Phew!” said Humphrey. Teddy Mac, Dai and Owen smiled as they listened to the sound of the wheel turning. “Thanks for your help,” said Humphrey. “I don’t know what we would have done without you!” Teddy Mac beamed. “Time to go!” said Dai and together they waved goodbye before taking the next pump trolley back home.




Margaret Edmonds © 2010



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